Project description

To improve the productivity and sustainability of crops grown under stressful environmental conditions (e.g. drought, extreme heat and salinity), plant breeders are constantly looking for new traits and markers for plant stress tolerance. During most stresses, plants accumulate Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS). ROS can be beneficial to the plant, eliciting stress defences and facilitating tolerance. However, over-accumulation of ROS can also be detrimental to the cell. Plants exhibit remarkable flexibility, including the ability to bypass parts of metabolism that would otherwise generate ROS.  Projects in my lab, and in others' labs, have shown that boosting the expression of genes that bypass ROS production sites, can improve the tolerance of model plants to a range of stresses. Now we must further characterise this bypass in crop plants. This set of projects will look at the genetic and biochemical mechanisms for ROS-prevention in wheat exposed to heat and drought stress. Students will gain experience with both molecular and biochemical techniques as well as plant growth and physiology techniques.


Potential co-supervisors are Prof Kathleen Soole, Prof David Day and A/Prof Colin Jenkins

Assumed knowledge

Molecular biology and/or biochemistry topics, e.g. DNA to Genome, Protein to Proteome and Integrating Molecular Biosciences.

Industry involvement

LongReach Plant Breeders

Note: You need to register interest in projects from different supervisors (not a number of projects with the one supervisor).
You must also contact each supervisor directly to discuss both the project details and your suitability to undertake the project.